Three Dos and Don’ts of Attracting Millennial Candidates

Posted: 27th July 2017 11:20

Even though Baby Boomers and Gen-X-ers still have a stranglehold on executive levels in the US workforce, according to Pew Research Center, Millennials are now officially the largest group in today’s labor force.
Naturally, knowing how to successfully recruit millennials has become more important than ever and employers all over the country are now completely rethinking their hiring methods, company cultures and work incentives.

How Not to Connect with Employees

If it seems like attracting and connecting to the younger generation is too hard at times, don’t feel completely discouraged – even multi-billion industry giants are having problems with it.

You’ve perhaps heard about Microsoft’s last year slip when they’ve tried to attract their young internes to a network by unfortunately calling them bea – an acronym for before anyone else ­– which you recognize as a term generally reserved for a significant other.

What’s worse, the company promised their internes they’ll, quote “get lit on a Monday” because apparently someone either didn’t understand what “being lit” meant or thought that being intoxicated on a Monday morning sounded appealing to their interns.

This disaster should serve as a clear warning to all of the companies out there – when trying to connect to young workers, being “hip” is quite risky. And while this isn’t advice you hear often – in this case – don’t be like Microsoft.

The Dos and Don’ts of Attracting Young Candidates

The mistake we talked about is actually an easy one for recruiters to make – as you can clearly see, it even happens to the best of us. When you’re trying to connect to a group you’re not a part of you can easily miss the mark and the results won’t be pretty.

Your company might lose credibility in the process and in worst-case scenario, you might affect your future recruiting efforts. And since, according to Upwork research, around 50% of recruiters have a hard time attracting millennials, you probably need all the help you can get.

So in order to help you improve recruiting efforts, here are a couple of dos and don’ts of attracting the younger generation of workers and secure the future of your business.

Three Dos:

1. Point Out Your Values

Just like most young people, millennials want to be a part of something bigger and eventually change the world. According to a recent Aflac survey, nearly 66% of millennials are more likely to invest in a company if it has a corporate social responsibility program.

Clearly, providing your employees opportunities to volunteer and help their local communities will pay off in the long run. Just make sure that during the recruitment process you share your ideas, values and goals with the candidates.

2. Provide Networking Opportunities

As Karl Moore explains in this Forbes article, younger generations in the workplace like to stay connected and would like to collaborate with their colleagues in ways nobody has before. For instance, management interns want to know what sales interns are working on, and vice versa.
So in order to address this collaboration cravings, companies across all industries are now incorporating group projects into their training programs. Basically, you should show your candidates that they’ll have an opportunity to work with each other and exchange ideas right out the gate.

3. Promote Career Development

Last but least, you need to show aspiring professionals how can they grow in your organization. So instead of talking about potential bonuses, you should discuss additional perks like special training and paid study leaves, and give them an idea of their possible career trajectory.

You have to realize millennials today are investing in their careers even before they graduate. They have, for instance sales recruitment companies like Pulse Recruitment from Melbourne that enable them to experience working in the corporate world before they finish college.

Three Don’ts:

1. Using too Much Slang

You probably realized this when we talked about the Microsoft case, but we cannot stress enough just how important is not try to engage people by using modern slang or colloquialisms. And even if you’re familiar with the expressions and you know how to use them, it’s still not a good idea.

Words and certain slang terms go in and out fashion so quick that by the time your email reaches its intended audience, the slang used in it might be completely outdated. So make sure not to be too casual when communicating with your potential employees.

2. Sticking to Your Old Ways

Your hiring process has to evolve. You cannot target millennials in the same way you’ve targeted baby Boomers in the past. Of course, you should try to keep the same level of professionalism, but it’s not about what you’re saying, it’s more about where you’re saying it…

Perhaps, you should concentrate on targeting potential workers through mobile devices, seeing how 45% of young people look for jobs on their smartphones and tablets, according to statistics compiled by Plus you should also target social media sites, because millennials look for jobs there too.

3. Ignoring all of the Information

Simply put, you have to do your homework. Instead of guessing what your candidates might want and preying your recruitment efforts don’t fall flat, you should go out and find some research on what they want from their employers – there’s a ton of research on it – and adjust your efforts accordingly.

For instance, this generation is more family-oriented than the previous one, so make sure to offer at least some flexibility. Also, you have to keep in mind that millennials love transparency, so try to be as honest about you environment, culture and the position you’re offering as possible.

Final Thoughts

Millennials are often stereotyped as overly confident, entitled and narcissistic, who feel like they should get paid X amount just for showing up. However, while money will always be one of the main motivators for workers of all generations, you need to realize that it’s not the biggest instigator for this generation.

The clock is steadily ticking for your company… According to PWC estimations, by the end of the decade, Millennials will make up more than 50% of global workforce. So if you want to grab the top prospects from this generation, you need to understand how to recruit them as soon as possible.

And hiring is just half the battle. For instance, while Baby Boomers were extremely faithful in their careers, millennials are far more entrepreneurial. According to a recent Deloitte survey, around 70% of young people today envision working for themselves at some point in their careers.

So in order to keep all of these young people, companies will have to create work environments that will empower and motivate them to remain faithful for a number of years. The ability to keep these workers satisfied will be vital in growing a business with a large millennial workforce.